Dead or dead slow? New equine safety video released

In support of this year’s Road Safety Week (18 – 24 November) The British Horse Society has launched a new safety video as part of its ‘Dead? Or Dead Slow?’ campaign.

The new safety video features the BHS’s Director of Safety, Alan Hiscox and Laura Thorogood of Canewdon Equestrians, an equestrian group formed following a tragic road incident involving Laura and her horse Angel. Angel tragically lost her life following the incident and Laura was left with serious injuries.

The video features a raw and honest conversation between Laura and Alan, discussing the strong bond she shared with her horse Angel and the road incident where she and Angel were struck by a vehicle at 53mph. The video has been created to highlight the seriousness of road safety for equestrians and the importance of passing horses on the road both safely and slowly.

Canewdon Equestrians have campaigned for three years to get the speed limit reduced where Laura’s accident took place in Essex. Last month they were told that the speed limit will be reduced from 60mph to 40mph.

Alan Hiscox, Director of Safety at the BHS said: “Incidents similar to the one highlighted in the video is sadly becoming a reality for many equestrians across the country. The aim of this video is to clearly demonstrate the devastating impact these incidents can have on riders and horses. If drivers adhere to our Dead Slow key messages by slowing down and allowing enough space between themselves and the horse then we can help bring this incident rate right down.”

Laura Thorogood of Canewdon Equestrians said: “As the third year anniversary of our accident approaches, although a number of years have passed the pain of losing Angel in such tragic circumstances still remains very prominent, to this day, in my mind. It was and will remain the worst day of my life. If anything can be learned from our message highlighted in this video and in addition to the Dead? Or Dead Slow? message it would be to take it slowly on country lanes in order to increase your reaction time and to “think” bend. I cannot emphasise enough the importance of the fact that our roads are shared by all vulnerable road users, everyone’s safety is paramount.”

The BHS launched its ‘Dead? Or Dead Slow?’ road safety campaign to help better educate drivers on how to pass horses safely on the road. The key behavioural change messages to drivers are:

If I see a horse on the road then I will …

  • Slow down to a maximum of 15mph
  • Be patient – I won’t sound my horn or rev the engine
  • Pass the horse wide and slow, (if safe to do so) at least a car’s width if possible
  • Drive slowly away

The BHS urges all riders or carriage drivers to report all incidents they are involved in, regardless of severity, to the BHS’s horse accidents website. Since November 2010:

 

  • 3,737 road incidents have been reported to the site
  • 43 people have lost their lives and 1085 injured
  • 315 horses have lost their lives and 945 injured

To help support the work of the BHS and the Dead? Or Dead Slow? campaign please visit justgiving.com/campaigns/charity/bhs/deadslow

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